Factors associated with mortality in severely malnourished hospitalized children who developed septic shock
Keywords:Septic shock, severe acute malnutrition, sepsis, malnutrition, blood transfusion
Introduction: Septic shock can often lead to death, even in resourceful settings, if not handled carefully. Therefore, we sought to evaluate the factors associated with deaths in the context of severe malnutrition and also the effects of early, i.e., within 3 hours of diagnosing septic shock vs. late blood transfusion.
Methodology: Here, all under-five severely malnourished septic shock children were admitted to ICU during 2013-2017. Children who died constituted cases (n = 54), and the survived (n = 39) represented controls. We excluded children who received the blood transfusion for other causes and who left against medical advice.
Results: In both descriptive and multivariate analysis, we found that death was significantly associated with the use of fourth-line antibiotics, corticosteroids, and the addition of vasopressors on top of dopamine (all p < 0.05). However, the decrease of serum calcium level was found significantly associated with death only after adjusting (p < 0.05). Even though the cases more often received early blood transfusion than the controls, the difference was insignificant (p = 0.134).
Conclusions: When a severely malnourished under-five child develops septic shock, requiring vasopressors, fourth-line antibiotic, and corticosteroid, with reduced serum calcium, the probability of death increases significantly. Our findings underscore the gravity of close monitoring at these points and the niches for early interventions.
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